The 1st Battalion sailed on the Braemar Castle and Goorkha at the beginning of January 1900, and arrived at the Cape about the 26th. Along with the 2nd Norfolk, 2nd Lincoln, and 2nd Hampshire, they formed the 14th Brigade under Brigadier General Chermside, and part of the VIIth Division under Lieutenant General Tucker. For work of the brigade and of the division see notes under 2nd Norfolk Regiment.

In the fighting which took place between 18th February—the battle of Paardeberg—and the 27th, when Cronje surrendered, the KOSB were several times sharply engaged, particularly on the 23rd, and did most excellent work in repelling and defeating the Boer forces coming to Cronje's assistance.

Two officers, 2 non-commissioned officers, and 1 private were mentioned in Lord Roberts' despatch of 31st March 1900.

In the action at Karee Siding, fought on 29th March, to clear some hills held by the Boers north of Bloemfontein, the KOSB had very heavy work, losing 1 officer and 14 men killed, and 3 officers and 42 men wounded.

When Uitval Nek, garrisoned by the Lincolns, was attacked on 11th July, the KOSB were hurriedly despatched from Pretoria to their assistance, but they did not succeed in arriving before the post fell.

In July 1900 a fresh brigade was put together under Colonel G G Cunningham, DSO, of the Derbyshire Regiment, consisting of the KOSB, 2nd Berks, 1st Border Regiment, and 1st Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders; and this brigade, along with Hickman's Mounted Infantry, the Canadian and Elswick batteries, two 6-inch howitzers and 5-inch guns, was placed under Lieutenant General Ian Hamilton. His force was ordered on 16th July to go twenty-five miles north of Pretoria, then swinging to its right, it formed the extreme left of the army for the eastern advance, Mahon coming in between Hamilton and the centre. On 21st July Mahon and Hamilton combined at Doornkraal, Hickman returning to Pretoria with empty waggons. On 22nd July the force was seven miles north of Bronkhorst Spruit, and on the 25th Balmoral was occupied. Immediately after this Hamilton's force, with Mahon, was ordered back to Pretoria to operate against the enemy in the Rustenburg district. He left Pretoria on 1st August, and on the 2nd had some stiff fighting at Uitval's Nek, where the troops behaved splendidly, two companies of the Berkshires climbing a steep cliff overlooking the pass on the east. This caused the Boers to flee, abandoning waggons and horses. The KOSB got back to Pretoria about the end of August, after a march which all who took part in it will remember on account of the extreme modesty of the rations. So scanty was the supply that before Pretoria was reached the health and fitness of the brigade was becoming affected. After two days' rest and hurriedly refitting the column set off towards another destination, Belfast on the Delagoa line.

The battalion, like many other regiments, was told off to garrison some stations and posts on that railway when the brigade arrived at Balmoral on 4th September.

Twelve officers and 20 non-commissioned officers and men were mentioned in Lord Roberts' final despatch.

In 1901 the battalion was brought into Pretoria, and early in May was taken to Krugersdorp. At Nauwpoort Nek they joined a column under Brigadier General Dixon, himself an old Borderer. The column operated in the dangerous Megaliesberg district. At Vlakfontein on 29th May 1901 Dixon's force was fiercely attacked; four companies of the KOSB were present, but the fighting chiefly fell to some of the Derby Regiment, who were with the left and rear, the points attacked (see Derbyshire Regiment). Colonel Kekewich, who had been in command at Kimberley, took over the column, which continued to hunt the kloofs, dongas, and spruits of the Megaliesberg with wonderful success. In his despatch of 8th September 1901 Lord Kitchener, referring to a capture on 10th August of 40 Boers, including Mr Wolmarans, chairman of the late Volksraad, says, "The majority of these prisoners, who were fully equipped with rifles, horses, and saddlery, were taken by the Volunteer Service company of the KOSB under Major Mayne". Major Mayne and several men were commended in despatches for this affair.

In September 1901 the battalion relieved the West Yorkshire Regiment on the Mooi River blockhouse line.

In January 1902 Major Mayne superintended the construction of a new line. Several attacks were made on the line in April and May. On the 13th May President Shalk-Burgher, Generals Delarey, Kemp, and Celhers, and other prominent Boers, came into the blockhouse line and were escorted to Krugersdorp on the way to the peace discussion.

The Mounted Infantry company of the regiment did much hard work and had some stiff fighting, particularly at Lambrechtfontein, Orange River Colony, 18th May 1901, when they had eight casualties.

Several members of the company gained mention during the campaign for very excellent work. In the

final despatch 3 officers and 3 non-commissioned officers of the battalion were mentioned.

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(164 Records)

 Surname   Forename   No   Rank   Notes 
AirlieJ6319Private1st Battalion
Demise: Died of disease 02 Jul 1900
Place: Pretoria
Source: In Memoriam by S Watt
AlexanderG2545Colour SergeantSource: DCM recipients
AmosHerbert Gilbert MaclachlanCaptainAMOS, HERBERT GILBERT MACLACHLAN, Captain, was born in London 28 April, 1866, son of the Reverend James Amos, of St Ibbs, Hitchin, Herts.  He entered the West India Regiment 15 October 1890; became Lieutenant, West India Regiment, 29 April 1892: Lieutenant, King's Own Scottish Borderers, 7 June 1893; Adjutant, KOSB, 25 July 1898, and Captain, KOSB, 24 January 1900.  He served in South Africa 1900-1-2; operations in Orange Free State, February to May 1900; Paardeberg 16 to 26 February; actions at Poplar Grove and Karee Siding, 29 March; actions at Yet River 5 and 6 May; Zand River 10 May; operations in Transvaal, May and June 1900, including actions near Johannesburg and Pretoria; operations in Transvaal, east of Pretoria and west of Pretoria.  He was created a Companion of the Distinguished Service Order [London Gazette, 27 September 1901]: "Herbert Gilbert Maclachlan Amos, Captain, King's Own Scottish Borderers.  In recognition of services during operations in South Africa".  He was invested by the King 18 December 1901, and was twice mentioned in Despatches [London Gazette 10 September 1901, and 29 July 1902].  He retired, and became Honourable Major in the 3rd Battalion Norfolk Regiment (Special Reserve).  Major Amos married, in 1893, Kate Isabella, daughter of General W A Stratton, and they had one son and one daughter. 
Source: DSO recipients (VC and DSO Book)
AndersonJ1014Colour SergeantSource: DCM recipients
ArmstrongG T2255Colour Sergeant1st Battalion
Demise: Killed in action 29 Mar 1900
Place: Karee
Source: In Memoriam by S Watt
BallantyneJ145Private3rd Battalion
Demise: Died of disease 12 Apr 1901
Place: Manzinyama
Source: In Memoriam by S Watt
BeechJ6310Private1st Battalion
Demise: Killed in action 29 Mar 1900
Place: Karee
Source: In Memoriam by S Watt
BestJ6723Lance Corporal1st Battalion
Demise: Died of disease 14 Jun 1900
Place: Cape Town, Woodstock
Source: In Memoriam by S Watt
BlairArthurCaptainBLAIR, ARTHUR, Captain, was born 2 September 1869, in India, son of Captain James Jenkins Blair, Central Indian Horse, and Mrs E C C Blair. He was educated at Cheltenham College, and Sandhurst; was gazetted to the King's Own Scottish Borderers as Second Lieutenant 1 March, 1890; promoted Lieutenant 13 February 1893; served in the Nile Expedition, 1898, including the Battle of the Atbara (Egyptian Medal with clasp; Atbara Medal); acted as ADC to Major Genrral, Infantry Brigade, at Aldershot, 10 August to 8 October 1899; served in South African War on Staff; was present at the Relief of Ladysmith, including action at Colenso; participated in the operations of 17 to 24 January 1900, and in the action at Spion Kop; took part in the operations of 5 to 7 February 1900, and in the action at Vaal Kranz; in the operations on the Tugela Heights (14 to 27 February 1900), and in the action at Pieter's Hill. He served in the operations in Natal, March to June, 1900, including action at Laing's Nek (6 to 9 June); was severely wounded. He commanded a regiment of Scottish Horse from 17 December 1900; took part in the operations in Orange River Colony, December 1900, and in operations in Cape Colony, December 1900, to January 1901. During the South African War he was mentioned in Despatches six times [London Gazette, 26 January 1900, 8 February 1901, and 18 July 1902 (Sir R Buller), 30 March, 19 June and 9 November 1900]. He received the Queen's Medal with six clasps and the King's Medal with two clasps, and for gallantry at Spion Kop, in 1899, he was created a Companion of the Distinguished Service Order [London Gazette, 19 April, 1901]: "Arthur Blair, Captain, King's Own Scottish Borderers. In recognition of services during the operations in South Africa". The Insignia were sent to the Commander-in-Chief, South Africa, and presented by HRH the Duke of Cornwall and York 14 August 1901. He served in the Transvaal, February 1901, to 31 May 1902; was appointed DAAG, Cape Colony District, 10 September 1902, to 22 March, 1904, and DAQMG, Cape Colony District, 23 March, 1904, to 9 September 1905; became Staff Captain and GSO, 3rd Grade, HQ of Army, 26 January 1907, to 25 October 1908; became Major 4 July 1908; was appointed Brigade Major, 10th Brigade, Eastern Command, 26 October 1908, to 25 January 1911; was GSO, 2nd Grade, South Africa, 9 March to 26 September 1912; held the same appointment in Egypt 27 September 1912 to 6 August 1914. He served in the European War from 1914, and was temporarily in the War Office 6 November to 6 December 1914; became Lieutenant Colonel 28 April, 1915; was DAA and QMG, New Armies, BEF, 7 December 1914 to 23 March, 1915; GSO2, 54th Division, BEF, 24 March to 3 May 1915; GS0.1, New Armies, BEF, 24 June, 1915, to 12 February 1916; Brigadier General, General Staff, 5th Army Corps, BEF, 13 February to 19 June 1916; Brigade Commander, 21st Infantry Brigade, Home Forces, 27 October 1916, to 26 February 1917; Brigade Commander, South Midland Reserve Brigade, Home Forces, 14 May to 18 July 1917; Commander, No 3 Section, Tyne Garrison, 19 July 1917, to 8 September 1918; Commander, Tees Garrison, 9 September 1918; promoted to Colonel, April, 1919. For his services in the European War he was twice mentioned in Despatches, and given the Brevet of Colonel 1 January 1916, for distinguished service in the field. He married (1st), Mary Beryl, daughter of General Buchanan, CB. She died in 1912. He married (secondly), in London, 11 June, 1914, Elizabeth Mary, daughter of Sir Charles Chandos Hoskyns, Bart, and they had three children: Jean Aileen Chandos: David, born 13 February 1916, and Chandos, born in 1919.
Source: DSO recipients (VC and DSO Book)
BlythW1186PrivateDemise: Died of disease 04 Jun 1900
Place: Cape Town. Wynberg
Source: In Memoriam by S Watt
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